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Links 10/10/2010: 10.10.10 Release of Ubuntu, SimplyMepis Experiment

Posted in News Roundup at 11:56 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • The Linspotting project – Linux video editing workflow ready for action

    A full Linux video editing workflow is finally ready for production use. The certified solution is based on Kdenlive plus a set of components which allow easy integration with different sources of video (firewire capture, DVD extraction, H264 transcoding, screen capture, etc). The certification and packaging initiative, which was made possible by years of impressive work from several groups of open source developers, comes from Angulo Sólido, Caixa Mágica and the freelance journalist Caroline Pimenta.

  • Linux package management is brilliant

    Often times when something just works, we tend to take it for granted. I think software package management in Linux is one of those things. It just works. Time and time again I have to help people with packages in Windows, which makes me even more thankful for the solid package management system in Linux. Packages can be installed while software is currently being used, allowing changes to happen when the software is closed and reopened. Packages can also be removed/updated/installed while the user is actively using the computer, with a simple SSH connection to their PC. And, best of all, no rebooting is necessary, unless you are updating the kernel itself, which is pretty rare.

  • Thank you, Linux! My Windows computer is infected

    I used this public computer and saved a file onto my USB drive. Then, because I am accustomed to working without any concern thanks to Linux, I forgot to check the USB contents. When I returned home, I booted my desktop computer in Windows and plugged the infected USB drive.

    Since Windows XP has become a little slow, I went for a cup of coffee and, when I returned, my computer was behaving in a way that I had not seen for quite long, yet not one I can call completely unfamiliar. My firewall was flashing alert messages crazily, the antivirus could not be updated, and the system froze on me as I sat dumbfounded. As you can see, THE PENGUIN NUMBED MY WINDOWS SECURITY SENSE!

  • Emergency Booting Windows PCs: Another Use for Linux

    Can there be still more to add to the list of useful functions a live Linux CD offers? This brief article reviews the use of Linux as a means of emergency booting a failed Windows PC and accessing potentially lost files. Linux as a boot OS is fairly common today. For instance, DELL often ships its servers with Windows driver disks that actually use a micro-Linux boot.

    However, I discovered another truly invaluable use for Live Linux CDs when my friend Mitch asked me to come over and help him with a very urgent need. His business report was due the next morning, but at the last moment his Microsoft Windows laptop failed to boot and he lost his report.

  • Switching from Windows to Linux: One Month On

    After a while, you soon get used to it, and I can certainly say that Gimp is perfectly adequate for providing the graphics we use on the site every day. When it comes to detailed work on photos, I still prefer to wait until I go home so I can use Photoshop there. It’s going to take me a few more weeks or months before I can handle that …

  • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Linux Outlaws 168 – The Brigadier Drops By

      This week on the show: Brigadier Bradshaw joins us as a guest host, we talk to Bradley Kuhn about his move to the Software Freedom Conservancy, Sintel is released, LibreOffice is launched, the FSF turns 25, Microsoft sues Motorola and Canonical announces the Ubuntu One music streaming service.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Mesa’s r600g Driver Test Drive

        There has been alot of talk about the Mesa driver in Linux. One of the new things that has been talked about as the savior of 3d graphics on Linux is the Gallium technology. This technology is supposed to make writing drivers easier and to allow for much more functionality in the Linux 3d stack.

        While I am not a gallium expert, I know enough to build the driver and test it out. So I started with my stock Fedora 13 setup (64bit, Q6600, 8GB RAM). I followed the wiki and installed the Kernel, libdrm, mesa and the ATI driver all from git. It took a little while, but it was reasonable to get going. It really helped that I had built many of these components before when the r600c driver originally came out, so I knew the process.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Ubuntu 10.04 E17 LiveDVD

      The Enlightenment foundation libraries (EFL) recently reached beta status after having been marked as alpha software for a decade. If you are unfamiliar with what EFL are, they can be summed up in a single quote from their front page:

      “Enlightenment is not just a window manager for Linux/X11 and others, but also a whole suite of libraries to help you create beautiful user interfaces”

    • GNOME Desktop

      • dots: a Braille translator for GNOME

        You can configure the output (cells per line, lines per page, etc…) and select the translation table. Also it presents the document on the screen in ASCII representation of using a Braille font with a review line. All the low level transcription is done using liblouis and liblouisxml libraries (the same that orca uses for the braille output). Also another nice feature is that you can actually edit the translation table with a nice UI. All the code is hosted on GNOME git: browse dots source code.

  • Distributions

    • Debian Family

      • Simply Mepis 8.5 challenge: the first four days

        To sum up, my experience as a Mandriva user handling Mepis is satisfactory up to this point. SimplyMepis is not simply a disappointment. I think that it rivals Mandriva in its KDE handling…maybe a simplified experience than the one I am used to with Mandriva, but Mepis had given me little to complain about.

      • Preview: Debian 6 “Squeeze” (Part 2: KDE)

        there’s nothing show-stopping in either version for me to definitely recommend one over the other.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 10.10 Officially Released

          Ladies and gentlemen, dear Ubuntu users, after three alphas, one beta and a release candidate, we are pleased to announce that Ubuntu 10.10 is here, today (October 10th), available on mirrors worldwide (see the download links at the end of the article).

        • Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat Has Been Released – See What’s New In Both Desktop And Netbook Editions

          Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat final has just been released. I’m taking this opportunity to review the major changes (mostly on the UI) in both Ubuntu 10.10 Desktop and Netbook editions. If you’re a regular WebUpd8 reader, you should already know all these changes but even so, read on for a new Unity video (recorded today) as well as a recap of the changes to Ubuntu Software Center, Unity and so on.

        • 10.10 10:10:10 – thank you and Happy Maverick Day!

          I spent a lot of time observing our community, this release. For some reason I was curious to see how our teams work together, what the dynamic is, how they work and play together, how they celebrate and sadly, also how they mourn. So I spent a fair amount more time this cycle reading lists from various Ubuntu teams, reading minutes from governance meetings for our various councils, watching IRC channels without participating, just to get a finger on the pulse.

        • Ubuntu One and FOSS Services

          My good friend S.Gerguri asked me to talk about the nature of the Ubuntu One services offered by Canonical Ltd. and has sent me his thoughts by email, I’ve quoted him here and responded with my own thoughts. Full disclosure: I briefly worked on the team that develops the Ubuntu One service at Canonical and so I’m going to be careful since I’ve seen code and talked about strategy while on the team.

        • Wikinews interviews Ubuntu developer Fabrice

          The 10.10 version of Ubuntu (codename Maverick Merkaat), a free operative system is to be released in the next few days. French Wikinews contributor Savant-fou (Baptiste) has interviewed Fabrice (fabrice_sp on Ubuntu), an Ubuntu’s MOTU (Master Of The Universe), member of the development team of the operative system.

        • Ubuntu 10.10 beta review

          Ubuntu has long been the Linux distribution favoured by businesses wanting to make a hassle-free switch from Windows, and the full release of the latest version, Ubuntu 10.10, is due this coming Sunday (October 10). In this review, we’ll be looking at the beta release of Ubuntu 10.10.

          Version 10.04 of Ubuntu arrived earlier this year and was an LTS (long term support) release, which means it benefits from three years of support for the desktop version; the server edition gets five years. This latest version, however, is a standard release and only gets security updates for 18 months.

        • We’re moving!

          As most of you who follow the Fridge know, Ubuntu has been given a face-lift. There is a cool new theme with new colors, a lighter feel, and just all around an upbeat tone to all the official Ubuntu related sites. Check out ubuntu.com and canonical.com to see the new look if you haven’t done so already.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • HD Video Android 2.2 myTouch Coming to T-Mobile

          T-Mobile today expands its myTouch line with a new Android 2.2 handset from HTC that sports a speedier processor than initial models as well as a front-facing camera for video calls, a larger screen and support for the carrier’s HSPA+ network, which offers 4G-like performance.

        • Android phones push cameras to 14 megapixels

          Japanese carrier KDDI announced a November release for a new 3.5-inch, Snapdragon-based “ISO3″ Android 2.1 phone from Sharp, touted for its 960 x 640 display and 9.6-megapixel camera. Meanwhile, Altek offered more details on its previously tipped 3.2-inch “Leo” Android phone — including an unprecedented 14-megapixel camera — and said it will ship in Europe in the first quarter of 2011.

        • Taking Care of Business with 12 Great Android Apps for Enterprise Users

          While Android smartphones were initially targeted at the consumer market, with the release of Froyo/Android 2.2, they’re increasingly making their way into the enterprise — and several Android applications are now available that are specifically designed to meet business users’ needs, covering everything from document scanning to task management.

          Although many of these Froyo apps are free, remember that you can uninstall any paid Android app within 24 hours of your initial purchase for a full refund — so go ahead and try any of the below, with no commitment.

Free Software/Open Source

  • What Do You Believe In?

    I believe in giving users software ownership, that no matter how much or how little they paid for software that they should have complete ownership and control over their own computers. They should have source code, they should be able to modify it or pay others to modify it for them, they should be able to redistribute and learn from it without strings, restrictions or end user agreements.

  • Designed not to scale

    With the aim of bringing in one new contributor, Máirín Duffy sometimes writes a “Fedora Design Bounty”, a long description of something she could do herself.

    Look at the first one and you’ll get a sense of the process she underwent. She created a splashy web page and discussed a specific issue at length (rather than simply linking to a ticket). She singled out a specific task for a newcomer and provided context showing why it was important that the work gets done. In the “What’s in it for you?” section, she explained how you’ll totally be cooler if you do it. Finally, she made it a contest: anyone can try working on it for 48 hours, and if they don’t succeed, the next person in line gets a shot.

  • Education

    • Linux ,schools and zeitgeist

      By accepting that the Zeitgeist that propels the desirable is an unreliable indicator of worth and that as ICT moves outside this realm an opportunity is created for its dissection into its constituent parts and inclusion into the fabric of school subjects.

      In other words computing is old and boring enough to have earned its place in the mainstream curriculum.

  • Project Releases

    • Project News for PLplot

      This is a development release of PLplot. It represents the ongoing efforts of the community to improve the PLplot plotting package. Development releases in the 5.9.x series will be available every few months. The next full release will be 5.10.0.

    • LM_Sensors 3.2.0 Has Been Released

      It’s been quite a while since having anything to report on with the LM_Sensors project, which is the free software project to provide user-space utilities and kernel drivers for various hardware sensors to be supported under Linux. LM_Sensors makes it possible to monitor the CPU/system temperatures, fan speeds, voltages, and other metrics for many systems and motherboards. The last time though we brought up LM_Sensors was in May when it received some better Intel CPU support, but the last major release (LM_Sensors 3.1.0) happened in March of 2009. Today though, LM_Sensors 3.2.0 has been released.

  • Programming

    • C++ Snippets on Linux: Vectors Vice Arrays As a Better Way to Store Data

      You may have read and enjoyed my recent article “C++ Snippets: Converting Hexidecimal Values to Decimal Values.” In that article, I briefly discussed a secret project that I have undertaken that will eventually result in my first GUI application for GNU/Linux, Windows, and perhaps even MacOS. At that time, I said that I could not reveal the exact nature of the program. I still cannot reveal the exact nature of the program, but I am releasing more of the source code under the GNU GPL license version 3. If you look at this code, run and compile it, you may glean a few more hints as to what kind of program I am actually aiming to write. in this article, I will reveal a few more details as to how I came up with this program idea.


  • What we’re driving at

    So we have developed technology for cars that can drive themselves. Our automated cars, manned by trained operators, just drove from our Mountain View campus to our Santa Monica office and on to Hollywood Boulevard. They’ve driven down Lombard Street, crossed the Golden Gate bridge, navigated the Pacific Coast Highway, and even made it all the way around Lake Tahoe. All in all, our self-driving cars have logged over 140,000 miles. We think this is a first in robotics research.

  • Does the market need freedom, or is it modern sharecropping?

    Thorne gave another example: An industrial designer in Berlin who has been financially successful using open licenses. As a result, he’s often asked what the business model around this is. Despite his financial success and critical acclaim, he admits that it’s the creative freedom that has real value. He had tenure, etc., but some people undervalue the importance of the creativity result of the freedom as opposed to the monetary returns.

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Conservationists row over ship hit by Japanese whaling vessel

      It was the moment a cat and mouse game between a Japanese whaler and a team of determined marine conservationists burst into chilling violence. In early January in the icy waters off Antarctica, the steel hull of the Okinawa-registered ship Shonan Maru II ploughed into a lightweight carbon-fibre pursuit vessel used by the anti-whaling charity Sea Shepherd, shearing off the sleeping quarters.

    • Rich nations ‘slow to start climate aid flow’

      Rich countries have been slow to launch the “fast start” climate funds promised at Copenhagen, the world’s least developed nations complained today as negotiators wrestled with a finance package to keep the UN climate talks process on track.

      World leaders agreed last year to inject $30bn (£19bn) into forestry and other efforts to tackle climate change between 2010 and 2012. Ahead of bigger, more long-term financing, the “fast-start” money was designed to build trust among poorer countries that produce very miniscule greenhouse gas emissions but suffer many of the worst consequences.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Corporate Censorship Kills Creative Innovation

      I recently twittered “Corporate censorship kills creative innovation because some great ideas aren’t seen as great until much later” but some people were confused, which isn’t surprising given that I could have fully explained what I meant if I’d just used all 140 characters.

      So to clarify, I’ll do a full post but due to how I have MySQL set up, I’ll need to keep to under two billion characters. Hopefully that will be enough this time.

      When I was talking about “Corporate Censorship”, I wasn’t talking about the relationship between a game developer and a publisher. That’s a unique relationship because one party (the publisher/employer) is paying the other party (the developer/employee) and I do think if you’re funding something, you do have the right to exert some control over what is being made. You are paying for it after all. In a good and healthy publisher/developer relationship both parties respect what the other brings to the venture and they let the other do what they do best with minmal interference, but that’s not what I was talking about.

    • Ninth Case Filed against Turkish Journalist Ismail Saymaz

      Turkish reporter Ismail Saymaz faces 79 years in prison due to the publication of critical articles for the Turkish daily newspaper Radikal, IPI’s National Committee in Turkey reports.

      Saymaz, accused of “violating the secrecy of an investigation” in relation to the Ergenekon trials and events in the city of Erzincan, has previously been charged with no less than eight other criminal cases. The eighth trial opened up against him on account of his article titled, “Love games in Ergenekon – The Ergenekon prosecutor also took the judge’s statement,” published on 8 June.

    • Pixel Light
  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • Scientific American appalled at US broadband, demands line-sharing

      Scientific American might be a bit late to the controversy over line-sharing and broadband competition in the US, but the magazine today released a sharp (and unfortunately short) editorial intent on making up for lost time. Called “Why Broadband Service in the US is so Awful,” the piece argues that ISPs need to open their networks to third-party competitors. As for politicians who don’t see things this way, they “have aligned themselves with large Internet providers such as AT&T and Comcast that stand to suffer when their local monopolies are broken.”

      The editorial appears in the October 2010 issue of the magazine and showed up online today. It breaks no new ground, instead citing the “recent” FCC-commissioned report from Harvard’s Berkman Center, the one arguing that most developed countries have more broadband competition thanks to their line-sharing rules.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Sintel: An Epic Open-Source Movie

        On October first, the open-source movie project of the Blender Foundation released third animated short on YouTube: Sintel. Five days later, the movie had already reached one million views. Previously released only at the Netherlands film festival (on September 27), Sintel’s success is as much due to its quality than it’s open-source nature.

      • Anti-piracy lawyers caught pirating each other’s work

        We would like to think that the lawyers that are prosecuting alleged copyright infringers are practicing what they preach, but it looks like one of the most high profile firms involved in such cases are just as guilty of stealing other’s work as those who are downloading illegal media.

      • White House IP Boss: Digital Piracy Costs U.S. Jobs

        “Protection of our innovation and protection of our creativity is an essential part of our plan for economic recovery,” U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel said in a keynote address here at a policy conference hosted by the Future of Music Coalition.


        In June, Espinel, joined by Vice President Joe Biden and other top administration officials, released an ambitious strategy charting a course of action to bolster IP protection and tighten enforcement. That plan contained recommendations on a variety of fronts, and Espinel said today that the administration is “moving forward quite rapidly” to put it in place.

Clip of the Day

Open Source Soil Pulverizer Prototype II

Credit: TinyOgg

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